GERD- Gastro-Esophageal-Reflux-Disease, aka heartburn affects about half of us. Some people say it is not caused by what you are eating instead it is what's eating you. In our stress-soaked environment there doesn't seem to be much we can do about what is eating us. We can, however, control what we eat. Our food environment is littered with reflux-producing elements. Our emphasis on grains, especially wheat, high-fat foods from restaurants and drive-thrus, meats, and dairy all increase reflux disease.
The best life-long remedy for GERD or gastro-esophageal-reflux-disease is a whole-foods-plant-based diet. That means a breakfast of a small amount of old fashioned oats (1/3-1/2 cup) cooked in water or plant milk, 1/4 cup of walnuts or almonds, 1/2 cup of blueberries (or other berries) is best. Lunch should be a large salad with no tomatoes (they can aggravate reflux), including dark greens like spring mix, romaine, arugula, spinach, and kale, with shredded carrots, red or yellow peppers, chopped broccoli or broccoli slaw, shredded raw beets, and maybe green or red onion. The dressing should be low-fat, preferably a vinaigrette (recipe here). Add a dollop of hummus or sprinkle on some canned chickpeas for added satiety. Dinner could be a medium-sized baked potato with mashed avocado, salt and pepper, with a large serving of roasted veggies such as zucchini, yellow squash, onions, carrots, brussels sprouts, green beans, turnips, etc. Get more whole-food-plant-based recipes at kristiwhitley.com.
Here is a list of foods that can aggravate acid reflux:
Here is advice from drhoffman.com:
Melatonin: Considerable research validates the benefits of melatonin in GERD. Melatonin is best known as a sleep aid and circadian rhythm regulator. It is manufactured by the pineal gland, located deep within the brain.
But a little known fact is that the gastrointestinal tract contains up to 400 times more melatonin than is secreted by the pineal gland. Research demonstrates that melatonin has the ability to suppress excess acid production; it also shields the GI lining from the destructive effects of free radicals caused by stress, toxic agents, or ulcer-causing drugs like NSAIDs.
A recent study showed that melatonin outperformed Zantac and boosted the effectiveness of Prilosec in alleviating symptoms and preventing tissue damage in patients with GERD.
The researchers summarized: “From the results of our study, it can be concluded that melatonin could be used in the treatment of GERD either alone or in combination with omeprazole. The combination therapy of both melatonin and omeprazole is preferable as melatonin accelerates the healing effect of omeprazole and therefore shortens the duration of treatment and minimizes its side effects.”
The suggested dose of melatonin for GERD is 3-6 mg at bedtime.
Aloe: Another traditional remedy for gastrointestinal ailments, aloe is most familiar as a home remedy for burns. Hence, its application to esophageal inflammation. For aloe to work best, it’s preferable to use the gel form, in generous amounts, away from food. I generally suggest ¼ cup of a purified aloe gel product like Lily of the Desert 3 or 4 times daily away from meals, on arising, or at bedtime.
It’s important to source a product that has minimal sugar, flavoring ingredients, or harmful additives, and that has reduced content of aloin which might have laxative or irritant effects on the GI tract.
In a recent study, aloe syrup was found to be comparable to Zantac and Prilosec in relieving symptoms of GERD, and was well-tolerated.
Probiotics: No formal studies have been done on administering probiotics for GERD, but it stands to reason that easing dysbiosis might relieve out-of-control bacterial proliferation, which can lead to upper intestinal gas and upward reflux of stomach contents.
Advice from Draxe.com:
GERD Natural Remedies: Supplements & Essential Oils: